Jane Bluestein knows from resistent readers. The author of The Win-Win Classroom spent much of her career as a teacher in an inner-city school in Pittsburg, PA, helping bring kids around to love learning and become avid readers. She now counsels educators and parents how to do the same. Here, Bluestein sheds light on how to grease the reading wheel so kids become more enthusiastic and less resistant to reading:

“If the kid says, ‘I don’t feel like reading,’ say, ‘What would you rather do? When would you rather read?’ As the adult, you can offer the child some choices. Say, ‘How many pages do you think you can read before you need a break?’ Or, ‘Do you want to do one of your chores and then sit down and read? Do you want me to set a timer? You can read until the timer goes off and then take a five minute break.

“There are some kids who are not going to be interested in reading matter until we give them some reading that matters to them. If the kids have to read something they’re not interested in because unfortunately that’s the reality of school, set a timer, give them 10 minute breaks, let them break up the reading, have them finish this page or that chapter, and then tell them, ‘Let’s do something else and get back to it.’ They deserve that. They deserve a break, they deserve playtime.”

Here’s how 4 other parenting experts say to respond…


Carol Dweck
Read between the lines, says Stanford psychologist and Mindset author Carol Dweck. Why? Because kids mean something very different when they object to reading. Format: Video (1:06)

Melissa Taylor
Don’t despair, says Book Love author Melissa Taylor. Instead, try these three secrets to get your reluctant reader hooked on books. Format: Video (1:58)

Marva Collins
Famed educator Marva Collins shares her secret for getting even the most recalcitrant readers to succeed. Format: Article

Bruce Feiler
The bestselling author of The Secret of Happy Families did his research and discovered the best way to respond. Format: Video (1:39)

Share on Pinterest